Friday, March 4

i love my jug of sourdough starter

my family doesn't understand my deep attachment to my jar of sourdough starter. i can't explain it to them. it's taken me years of training to get them all to the point of understanding that if the jar is on the counter behind the sink, leave it there. if it's on the ledge behind the toyostove, do not move it. if it's on the bottom shelf in the fridge, don't bump it trying to make room for your sunny d. they all finally understand the basic sourdough rule: do not touch the jar. every summer i wrap it up and hand carry it with me on the boat ride to the lodge. the boys tease me that i should strap an EPIRB on it.
i don't know that i understand why i am so attached to it. it's not like i'm ma ingalls in a sod house in the middle of the prairie~ i can pick up a loaf of bread at safeway lickity-split. maybe it's a nurturing thing.
my friend veronica gave me a cup of her starter several years ago so i could get mine going. a friend of hers shared a cup with veronica long ago, with the story that it originated from relatives who carried it with them over the chilkoot trail in the 1890's.
i don't know if that is a valid fact or not, but when veronica handed me my jar of gooey, yeasty history, i felt a certain obligation to keep that starter alive. so far so good. i feed it, stir it, keep fumbling hands away from it. in return it turns out amazing muffins and sourdough french bread. and last night, a fantastic batch of pancakes. i wonder if they could be called vintage...


  1. I have a container of starter that I got from my sis in law. I have had it about 10 years and my sis in law had it about 18 years before I got it from her. Keeps chugging along. My husband had to bring it home on the airplane for me in a water bottle (before 9/11) and was all worried about if they asked him what it was that he would have to say it was a living organism...bread strarter! LOL. I ALSO feel that obligation to keep it going.

  2. Hi Deb, I found you thru Texture Tuesday, I love the old tin cup you posted. My hairdresser is from Kodiak maybe you know her or her family. Her name is Darlene Knowles, her family still lives in Kodiak. Your blog and your work are wonderful,I am going to be checking in to get inspiration from you. Pat Mark


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